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Helping Kids through Traumatic or Hard Moments

April 1, 2013

Difficult events are a part of childhood. We can’t – and shouldn’t try – to protect our kids from everything! Sometimes kids experience BIG hard moments, like a death, divorce, surgery, or major car accident. Sometimes kids experience hard moments that don’t seem traumatic to the adults but are overwhelming for the child. But not every single hard moment needs a trip to the therapists office! There are a lot of things you can do at home to help you child after he’s experienced a traumatic or hard moment.

I’ve created a four part video series on helping our kids through the hard moments. Today’s short video will give you five reasons why it’s important to help you child develop a narrative or story about the hard moment. I’ll release three additional videos this week.  Video 2 will help you out with what you need to include in the story for your child. Video 3 will give an example of creating a short story with stuffed animals- a great way to help a young child make sense of a hard moment. Video 4 will give you an example of creating a longer narrative or story of a hard moment- appropriate for a young school age child.

As a reminder- these videos are suggestions only! If you child has experienced a significant trauma or ongoing trauma, such as abuse, neglect, or domestic violence, then consulting with a therapist is probably your best bet. Some therapists will want to see your child. Some may be able to consult with you about the trauma and empower you to help your child without your child coming into the office. I do both types of work with clients!

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Robyn Gobbel, LCSW is a child and family therapist in Austin, Texas specializing in adoption, trauma, and attachment counseling. She is the founder of the Central Texas Attachment & Trauma Center.

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